254 million people affected by natural hazards in 2003: figures on the rise
The natural hazards that are badly affecting countries as diverse as China, Bangladesh, France and the United Kingdom demonstrate that countries usually well prepared to prevent disasters are suffering huge losses in lives and livelihood. This illustrates a trend that many UN agencies and experts who work on disaster reduction have observed for some time now. Not only is the world globally facing more potential disasters, but increasing numbers of people are becoming more vulnerable to hazards. This is alarming.